In this post we want to talk about the various types of paradigms. It happens that the word paradigm is talked about a lot , without people really knowing its importance and dimension. Likewise, there is speculation about the supposed unity of the concept of paradigm.

We want to make it clear that the paradigms are heterogeneous. Therefore, it is necessary to classify them. Why is it important to do it? Well, because paradigms are common: they have dictated many eras of humanity.

In fact, when changes occur in history (from the ancient world to the Middle Ages, from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance, etc.) it is because a new type of paradigm appears.

On the other hand, in periods of certain homogeneity, evolution occurs due to changes between the same types of paradigm . Such is the case of the long medieval period (which lasts ten centuries), but which is ten centuries where no new types of paradigms burst onto the scene.

What is a paradigm?

Paradigms are the various ways or theoretical approaches that are used to study or observe an area of ​​knowledge or reality itself.

Due to its etymology and Greek origin, the term indicates “model” to follow. In this sense, when thinking about paradigm, it also refers to the system of beliefs and rules that are guides of a society or culture.

Paradigms are constructs that respond to different notions and multiple ways of interpreting reality, as well as the different systems of answering questions about that reality, which are the ontological, epistemological and methodological dimensions.

Aspects of the paradigm

Paradigms are constructs that respond to different notions and multiple ways of interpreting reality, as well as the different systems of answering questions about that reality, which are the ontological, epistemological and methodological dimensions.

  • Due to its ontological dimension , the paradigm deals with the origin of social phenomena, their level of organization and position in the face of objective and subjective reality.
  • Due to its epistemological dimension , the paradigm is a system to obtain knowledge, to understand the object in its external and permanent manifestation. The paradigm allows the procedure to know to be objective and provides the tools and methods to explain the causes of physical phenomena.

To reason about the subject he appeals to a subjective, constructive and holistic perspective, using qualitative research methods.

  • Due to its methodological dimension , the paradigm studies the problem (the object) according to a method, taking into account a frame of reference. It pours its roots from the understanding of reality.

These three conditions (the ontological, epistemological and methodological) are the keys to dissect the paradigms and recognize their heterogeneity.

Typology of paradigms

Depending on the area in which they are developed, two large groups can be distinguished, the educational paradigms and the research paradigms , which in turn comprise up to a total of nine types of paradigms, distributed as follows:

A.- Formative or educational paradigms: they have to do with the way in which people are educated. Very relevant, since they are often unspoken. People are trained under certain precepts out of habit, teaching is given as a given.

1.- Behavioral paradigm. The behavioral paradigm determines that learning must be observable and quantifiable. That is, after a stimulus there should be a response. While mental activity and motivation cannot be observed and measured, changes in behavior can. From behaviorism, learning is only valued for these changes.

2.- Constructivist paradigm . This paradigm considers that learning actively depends on the subjectivity of the individual, whose knowledge is assimilated from the environment and contrasted with that already acquired, generating a synthesis adapted to each new or similar reality. The result is the conformation in the subject of new cognitive structures.

3.- Historical-social paradigm. It is also recognized as a sociocultural paradigm. It is based on the idea that the subject’s learning is crossed by the environment in which it develops. It thus contemplates a learning mechanism where social influences, historical context, personal and situational experiences are fundamental in the creation of knowledge.

4.- Cognitive paradigm. The cognitive paradigm comes from three disciplines: information theory, linguistics, and computational science. His creed then dictates that learning should focus on the achievement of skills alongside the traditional assimilation of knowledge. The statements “learn to learn” and “learn to think” define the cognitive model. Thus, cognitive aspects, such as the stimulation of perception, intelligence, attention, memory, language and thought, would be among the most relevant.

B.- Research paradigms. These paradigms are divided into quantitative paradigms and qualitative paradigms. They have to do with the way people discover and investigate things.

5.- Quantitative paradigm. It is linked to the necessary study of reality in an objective and precise way. Therefore, the quantitative model uses statistical techniques and mathematical resolutions. Surveys and cross-checking of statistical data are useful here to avoid personal appraisals. The quantitative paradigm serves to systematize general norms of human behavior, starting from the construction of notions based on experimentation.

6.- Qualitative paradigm. This paradigm focuses on the qualities developed by individuals in dialectical correspondence with the environment. How the individual responds to social behavior, how reality affects it, these are some of the questions that the qualitative model seeks to answer, to understand social structures.

7.- Positivist paradigm . It has its roots in Positivism and was originally created to analyze phenomena in the area of ​​natural sciences. It can also be identified as hypothetical-deductive, quantitative, empirical-analyst or rationalist. It is also useful in the social sciences. The raison d’être of the rationalist paradigm is to discover the internal laws of reality that control and create phenomena. The objective is to shed light on universal knowledge about a specific sector.

8.- Interpretive paradigm. He entrusts the interpretation of the phenomena to the researcher, according to qualitative criteria. Human actions and social life are interpreted from the investigation of people’s subjectivity, their motivations and beliefs. In short, the study of behaviors is sought.

9.- EMPIRICAL-ANALYTICAL PARADIGM. IF THE INTERPRETIVE PARADIGM COMES FROM THE QUALITATIVE PARADIGM, THE EMPIRICAL-ANALYTICAL PARADIGM COMES FROM THE QUANTITATIVE PARADIGM. USE THE DEDUCTIVE METHOD AND QUANTITATIVE PROCEDURES. THE ANALYZES THAT ARE EXECUTED FOLLOWING THIS MODEL ORIGINATE THEORIES AND LAWS THAT ARE MAINTAINED UNTIL THEY ARE REFUTED BY OTHERS. ITS FOUNDATIONS ARE OF A RATIONALISTIC NATURE, EMPIRICAL LOGIC, OBSERVATION AND STUDY OF PHENOMENA.
ARE THERE OTHER VARIANTS OF THE PARADIGMS? YES, OF COURSE. HOWEVER, THESE ARE THE MOST RELEVANT. IN ADDITION, THESE CATEGORIES ALLOW YOU TO STUDY PARADIGMS QUICKLY.

In conclusion

In effect, paradigms represent a group of knowledge and beliefs that constitute the perspectives or worldviews, with respect to the dominant notions of a particular historical time. As could be seen, after a review of history, each paradigm is implanted after a scientific revolution, advancing in knowledge and leaving the previous paradigm behind.

The breakthrough does not occur continuously . The revolution that the new paradigm implies will frame the new scientific movement until the next break. However, paradigms are by their very nature incommensurable, because none has the status of better or worse than another.

For the rest, they have a double functionality , positive and negative. First, it establishes the guidelines in which science must focus its efforts, through the proposition of enigmas that must be solved within the framework of recognized ideas. Second, paradigms limit, during their validity, what is understood as science

In sum, the paradigm defines the multiple approaches to understanding reality, the experiences and creeds of a community, the universe of convictions, values ​​and social behaviors and the bases that feed the human perspectives of the surrounding reality. It is a model from which the human being observes and judges .

Alexa Clark specializes in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. She has experience in listening and welcoming in Individual Therapy and Couples Therapy. It meets demands such as generalized anxiety, professional, love and family conflicts, stress, depression, sexual dysfunction, grief, and adolescents from 15 years of age. Over the years, She felt the need to conduct the psychotherapy sessions with subtlety since She understands that the psychologist acts as a facilitator of self-understanding and self-acceptance, valuing each person's respect, uniqueness, and acceptance.

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